Giant pangolins are very peculiar mammals that look like giant fir cones or artichokes. They usually walk on two legs which makes them look a bit like a hunchbacked person.
The body of the giant pangolin is almost completely covered with sharp scales that overlap each other. These protect it against the sharp claws of leopards and hyenas. With their long, curved claws, they burrow into ant and termite hills in order to dig out the animals and eat them with relish. Sometimes they also pull off the bark from trees in order to get to the insects lying underneath. Since giant pangolins don't have any teeth, they collect their prey using their long, sticky tongue and swallow them whole.
In the event of danger, giant pangolins roll themselves into a ball to protect the head and belly.
- Scientific name: Smutsia gigantea
- Global home: Africa
- Conservation status: Vulnerable
- Primary habitat: Subtropical Forest, Swamp Forest